Everyone gets headaches, but they are more complicated than you realize. Each type has its own set of symptoms and ways to relieve the pain. Identifying the type of headache you have is a step in the right direction in finding the underlying cause and the possibility of preventing them. Here is a list of the most common types of headaches.
Dealing With Cluster Headaches
There are multiple types of headaches. A tension headache is the most common type out of over 150 different kinds. These headaches do not usually cause sensitivity to light, nausea or vomiting since muscle tension and stress are the usual factors behind the pain. They do, however, cause a steady dull ache on both sides of your head. Unfortunately, tension headaches can be chronic and occur every day. This may be the most common kind, but there are other multiple types of headaches.
Treating Migraine Headaches
A migraine is much more than a terrible headache. They are often debilitating and may leave you in bed for days. Lights, sounds and movements may trigger specific symptoms like fatigue, numbness, visual disruption, tingling and much more. Most of the time, migraines cause a pounding or throbbing and can last for hours or up to three days.
Managing Cluster Headaches
Cluster headaches are one of the more serve types of headaches to have. It often is described as a burning, piercing pain surrounding your eye. The pain becomes so intense that some people cannot sit still. It is common for one of your eyelids to droop, become red or swell, typically on the side with the pain.
The reason behind their name comes from the headaches occurring in groups or clusters. You usually get two or three headaches a day during the cluster period, and it lasts up to three weeks, with the attacks lasting 15 minutes or more at a time. Your cluster headache can go into remission, only to come back a few weeks or months later.
Nursing a Sinus Headache
A sinus headache is generally caused by a sinus infection, causing pressure between your eyes, cheeks and forehead. This pressure causes a throbbing sensation around the affected areas, and the pain may intensify if you bend forward. The ache typically comes with other sinus symptoms such as runny nose, swollen face and fever. Although sinus headaches mimic migraines in many ways, they are not usually accompanied by nausea and vomiting.
Handling a Caffeine Headache
When you drink caffeine daily, your body becomes dependent on it. Caffeine naturally narrows the blood vessel surrounding your brain. When you take a break from the caffeine intake, those blood vessels expand and put pressure on the nerves, causing pain. This pressure is what triggers a caffeine withdrawal headache. The effects of a withdrawal headache can last for a few weeks since that is how long it takes for the caffeine to leave your symptoms entirely.
Controlling Headaches from an injury
Headaches caused by trauma to the head can last for minutes, weeks or rarely years. These long-term headaches are often called post-traumatic headaches. Mild injuries to the brain are known as concussions, so when this type of injury occurs, you might need to have a neurological examination. Sadly, when you experience this kind of headache, you also experience neurological issues. That can mean anything from ringing in the ears, blurry vision, anxiety or dizziness.
Administering Treatment for Your Headache
When it comes to remedying a headache, medications and other treatments are the first approaches, but there are other ways. Making changes to your lifestyle to avoid triggers can prevent you from getting a headache. But, what works for one person might not have the same effect on others.
Start with over-the-counter medications to help ease the pain headaches bring. However, it is best to use a different approach for stricter headaches like migraines and cluster headaches since regular pain relievers do little for them. Migraines and cluster headaches often require treatment from a physician.
Remember, help is available to you whenever you need it. If over-the-counter medication is not enough to do the trick, you should visit your doctor to find if there is an underlying cause contributing to the pain. This cause may require a prescription that precisely fits your needs. Keep these options in mind the next time a headache strikes.